NEW YORK--With the economy faltering, Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) is going to call for some kind of new financial markets regulations in the speech he is to deliver Thursday at The Cooper Union, for the Advancement of Science and Art where he will be introduced by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Obama is also doing a heavy round of fund-raising in Manhattan today, with at least three events.
UPDATE: Bloomberg just introduced Obama. He noted he has not endorsed yet. (but this won't stop talk today of an Obama-Bloomberg ticket) He talked about how Abraham Lincoln, in the hall we are in, defended his posiiton on slavery 127 years ago. He said he was welcoming "another man from Illinois."
"There will be plenty of opinions of what he has to say, this is New York after all," Bloomberg said." END UPDATE
In the audience here: William Donaldson, the former Securities and Exchange Commission chairman (2003-2005) and former Federal Reserve Board Chairman Paul Volcker (1979-1987.). Obama will be speaking from a podium once used by President Abraham Lincoln.
Obama breakfasted with Bloomberg in December at a restaurant on East 50th, where Obama picked up the tab for the billionaire political independent, a former Republican and Democrat. With Obama aiming at Republicans and independents, his meal with Bloomberg sparked speculation of a joint ticket.
THIS IS A REPRINT OF DEC. 1 SWEET BLOG POST
Sweet column: Obama-Bloomberg? Bloomberg-Obama? Big Apple power breakfast. Obama treats billionaire.
NEW YORK -- Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.), who is running for president, breakfasted early Friday at a coffee shop here with New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who is eyeing an Independent White House bid.
Obama picked up the tab for the billionaire Bloomberg, paying in cash and leaving a $10 tip on the $17.34 check.
The breakfast came at Bloomberg's initiative -- Obama had a standing invitation to dine with the mayor, Obama's campaign said. For Obama, who is looking to cut into the New York home field advantage of chief rival Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.), breakfast with Bloomberg was a win-win to accept.
They talked about the economy, education, homeland security and global warming, an Obama aide said. The tete-a-tete also fueled political speculators to ponder an Obama-Bloomberg ticket -- or the other way around.
Later Friday, Bloomberg, on his "Live from City Hall" weekly radio show, said he and Obama talked about matters in Washington where a senator or a president can make a difference.
Bloomberg last saw Clinton at a Sept. 11 commemoration, his spokesman said. Clinton did not endorse Bloomberg when he ran.
The two political titans ate at the New York Luncheonette at 135 East 50th St. in midtown Manhattan, where they talked for more than 30 minutes. They were seated at a window table on purpose, to create an ultimate photo opportunity.
Photographers snapped away through the glass, while Obama munched his bacon, eggs over easy and toast and Bloomberg his scrambled eggs and potatoes as they both ignored the choreographed spectacle a few feet away.
Obama spokesman Robert Gibbs and Obama chief strategist David Axelrod waited outside during the Obama-Bloomberg breakfast summit. Gibbs said: "They are two guys that have, I think long believed that we need to end the game-playing in Washington and get something done, frustrated with that type of politics and a desire to turn the page on that, and get some common sense solutions to the problems that are affecting everyday Americans."
The photo op started as a clandestine operation, the second in two days for the Obama campaign. Obama campaign reporters got a cell call and e-mail near midnight with instructions to meet at a midtown Manhattan street corner at 7:15 a.m.
The night before, there was less than 30 minutes notice to Obama scribes to meet in front of a White Castle in Harlem, which turned out to be a staging area for a photo op with the Rev. Al Sharpton and Obama at a nearby soul-food restaurant.
Bloomberg is the one-time Democrat turned Republican who recently declared himself an Independent and is mulling a presidential run, viable for him because he could pour part of his fortune into a White House campaign.
Obama is pitching himself as the candidate who can appeal to the Bloombergs of the nation. He underscored that point in remarks prepared for Friday's appearance at the Democratic National Committee fall meeting in a Washington suburb.
"I'm attracting more Independents and Republicans to our cause than anyone else in this campaign," Obama said.
Not to concede ground, Clinton, a Chicago native, announced Friday the names of her Illinois Steering Committee.